Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Do you have tension issues?

I'm not talking about personal tension..we all have some of that! haha  I'm talking about tension issues with your sewing machine. (Of course maybe that might also cause some personal tension... lol) If so, here is something which you might find helpful.... 
1) Top thread lays flat on the fabric
  • Upper tension dial too tight
  • Lint in upper discs
  • Machine not threaded correctly
  • Lint in bobbin tension spring
  • Poorly wound bobbin
  • Thread not in bobbin tension spring
  • Bobbin tension not set correctly
2) Bottom thread lays flat
  • Upper thread tension is too loose
  • Lint in bobbin tension spring
  • Poorly wound bobbin
  • Machine not threaded correctly
  • Bobbin tension not set correctly
3) Loops on bottom of quilt
  • Thread is not flossed in top tension discs
  • Top thread tension set too loose
  • Machine not threaded correctly
  • Burr on hook
4) Fabric Puckering
  • Top tension too tight
  • Bottom tension too tight
  • Bobbin not correct size for bobbin case
  • Poorly wound bobbin
  • Bobbin too full

This is published with the permission of Handi-Quilter which you can visit here. You may find other helpful info there too, under Downloads.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Workshop, Sat. Jan 23. Spaces available.

Paper-piecing- a great technique for large or small quilts!
There are some spaces available in our upcoming workshop this Saturday, January 23. If you live in our area (Fredericton NB) and would like to join us, we'd love to have you! The class is "Learn to Paperpiece" with yours truly, Linda Hubbard. It is a skills oriented workshop, and supplies needed are minimal.
In the morning, you will learn the technique of paper-piecing by progressing through a series of several blocks, from simple to more complex. In the afternoon you will learn how to join blocks together, how to piece odd-shaped pieces, how to cut angled pieces, how to read a complex PP pattern, and how to look at any pieced quilt block and draw it out as a paper-piecing pattern. We will look at the use of different foundation materials, some of which can be left in the quilt. There will also be a demo of "string-piecing," a very simple and slightly different form of foundation piecing.
Paper piecing is a very useful technique that every quilter should have in their bag of tricks. It is very precise and makes complex blocks very simple to piece. It makes tiny blocks (for miniatures) very do-able and perfect points as on a Mariner's Compass easy! It is perfect for group quilts, as every block will come back exactly the same size! If you can count to 10, and sew on a  straight line, then you can learn to paper-piece. If you have tried it before and decided you don't like it, come to this class and I will change your mind!!   :)  Or if you just need a "refresher" this is your chance!
I will bring a number of quilts, large, small and miniature to the class as well as a number of books and patterns for inspiration. It will be a fun-filled day, why not join us? Leave a comment here if you don't know how to contact me otherwise.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Happy 2016!

It seems a little late to be saying it, but I'm going to say it anyway - HAPPY NEW YEAR! I hope 2016 is a fabulous year for you and for our guild. Here's to lots of productive stitching time in our sewing spaces in the coming months.
Our January meeting is coming right up- Jan. 19th, 7p.m. Barb P and Susan D will be doing a presentation on English paper-piecing. Hexies here we come!! I know it will be an inspiring program.
We are so lucky to have so many talented members who are willing to share their skills and knowledge with us. We have had some wonderful programs so far this year. We started off with a presentation and trunk show by Sandi M. who shared many hints, tips and "how-to's" with us in regards to entering Challenges. Sandi has done many Guild Challenges and won more than a few ribbons. Sandi's creative mind often takes her "outside the box"  when it comes to interpreting Challenge themes, and she further challenges herself by using "non-traditional" fabrics and materials (remember the zebra made of black leather and white bridal satin?) What an inspiration this program was!
(By the way, speaking of Challenges, how are you coming along with your Starstruck Challenge piece?)

In October, JeanneKaye, our own "energizer bunny" treated us to a Christmas-y display of her many holiday projects. I call JeanneKaye the Queen of Placemats! I think she must be able to whip up a set in her sleep by now... She never ceases to amaze us with her productivity, we loved her many placemats, wallhangings, and larger quilts! This was the perfect program to get us all in the mood for our Christmas Appliqué workshop the following Saturday.

November's program gave us lots of info and ideas for bordering our quilts. How to measure for and add borders properly, plus lots of ideas for border variations, both plain and pieced, gave us food for thought. I'm expecting to see some interesting borders at Show and Tell in the coming months, ladies....

So we're off to a great start, and here it is January already! I hope you are rested and refreshed after the Christmas break and ready to dive into guild activities, be it a workshop, a charity project, or whatever.  Speaking of charity projects, there will be a large tote FULL of FREE FABRIC at the January meeting. please plan to help yourself as I do not want to take it back home. Choose a few pieces, or co-ordinate a number of pieces to use in a charity project, large or small. You can't get any better than "FREE".....
I have updated our list of tips (click on Tip Time at the top of the sidebar to access the list.) I know I am missing a few, so if you have given a tip recently and don't see it there, please refresh my memory so I can add it. Thanks.
See you tomorrow night!

Monday, November 30, 2015

Winter's Coming...

The days are getting colder... and shorter. Instead of thinking of the coming winter and its cold weather, I concentrate on "more studio time"! Yes, more time to sew. That's a more pleasant thought. I just won't look out the window at the rising drifts of snow.....

The guild has recently acquired a good amount of cottons, a sizeable portion of a local quilter's stash. It was donated to us for use in charity quilts. Then just yesterday I was made aware of a call for "warm items" for the coming Syrian refugees - see below. So if anyone is interested in some free fabric for use in a charity quilt, for the refugees or otherwise, please get in touch with me. I will be bringing it to our January meeting, but would happily part with it before then as well. There is a good selection of colours, some larger pieces, but most is smaller pieces and suitable for "scrappy" projects.

Following is the info I received on the call for "warm items".... 

A call to the community for warm, handmade goods for newly arrived Syrian refugees:

Calling on all knitters, crocheters, weavers, felters, quilters! Let's offer a warm welcome to our newest residents. We are looking for mittens, hats, sweaters, socks, blankets and throws for all ages to stay warm during a New-Brunswick winter.

Nothing says we care more than hand-made wearables! Let's make a positive impact through the arts.

Yarns On York will provide a 20% discount on all purchases of materials for the initiative!

Drop-off locations for donations:
artsnb office - 649 Queen street, 2nd floor...
Yarns On York - 72 York street
Bibliothèque publique de Fredericton Public Library - 12 Carleton street

Donations will be accepted until January 29th, 2016.

So there you go, ladies. If you are all ready for Christmas, and looking for a project to do, how about a quilt for this worthy cause... and I can provide you with some fabric!!  :)  You know how to reach me- send me an email or give me a call. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Back to Guild!

Hasn't the summer flown by? We wait sooo long for summer to arrive, and this year it seemed to be later than ever, and then Pooof! It's over! I'm sure we still have lots of lovely days ahead, but September has arrived! And with it our thoughts turn to "Back to Guild" ( that's my take on  the proverbial Back to School.)
We go back to Guild next Tuesday evening, Sept. 15. Meetings begin at 7p.m. and new members are welcome! If you are new to quilting, or new to the city, or just want to check us out, please come and join us next Tuesday evening. We meet at the Johnston Avenue Senior Centre on the north side. Johnston Ave. is the next street on the left after McDonalds, if you are heading upriver. We have a fabulous program this month with Sandi M. doing a presentation on Challenges. Sandi has done close to 20 challenge pieces (winning ribbons on many of them) and will share them all with us, telling us about her "creative process," how she comes up with her original interpretations of  challenge themes, how she draws her patterns and so on. It promises to be an interesting and very inspiring program. You won't want to miss this meeting!!

Did you know that this is National Sewing Month? What a great way to celebrate September and our return to Guild!! I hope you are finding some time to spend with your machine!   :)

Congrats to FQG members who put quilts in this week's Exhibition. I saw many many ribbons on "our girl's" quilts- Congrats to Gwenda M on having a Grand Champion quilt! What a beauty it is! Also to Jeanne Kaye S., Susan M. and Joyce H., all ribbon winners!

Next week is the KVQG show in Quispamsis. Info is on the sidebar under Upcoming Shows and Events. The show runs Thursday to Saturday. Other shows this fall in Charlottetown, Halifax, Miramichi and Amherst are also listed there; I do my best to keep this list as "up to date" as I can, so check there often.

See you next Tuesday night! Can't wait!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

And the winners are...

Tonight at our final meeting/potluck dinner, the Viewers' Choice winners from our show Symphony of Spring, were announced. We were all thrilled with the winners!

The greatest number of votes went to My Flower Garden by Barb Perry. This quilt is hand-pieced and contains approximately 5,800 hexagons! Even the light background behind all the flowers is hexagons. (She also cut about 2,000 of the hexagon papers herself.) Once the main portion of the quilt was together, it was appliquéd to the borders. If you know Barb, you might know she is a devoted cat-lover, and hidden in a good number of the hexagons are little kitty faces! Congratulations Barb! Well deserved! You blow us away with your hand pieced hexies!

Priceless by Mary Brown was the next Viewers' Choice winner. The design is known as Boston Common, and Mary did an exquisite job on the hand quilting - it really caught the eye of many visitors at our show. Mary travels the greatest distance to attend our meetings, coming all the way from Grand Manan Island as long as the weather co-operates and the ferry crossing is not too rough... Mary we are so thrilled that you continue to travel to be with us each month, and we hope you'll choose to continue joining us for a long while yet! Congratulations Mary! Your beautiful quilt is well named, and very deserving!

Roberts' Garden by Alice Kirkpatrick was the third Viewers' Choice winner. Alice is a long time guild member and she has been producing exceptional quilts for many many years. Alice is not only a fine hand quilter, she also does top notch hand appliqué. This quilt features both of these talents as well as some three dimensional appliqué. Another beautiful quilt! Congratulations Alice! Another ribbon to add to your large collection!

Thank you to all who visited our show and voted. You did a great job of choosing our winners! We would not be able to award these ribbons without you and your input. We hope you are as pleased with the results as we are!

Final meeting tonight.

The year has flown by and tonight is our final meeting and potluck dinner. Don't forget the earlier start time - we aim to eat around 6:30. Bring your hot dishes hot and ready to serve, and your cold dishes chilled. Please label any dishes that contain nuts and remember your plate, mug and cutlery.
The Viewers' Choice winners from our show will be announced and on display.
Good food, good company, ribbons and prizes! Can't wait! See you there!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Symphony of Spring 2015 Show

Symphony of Spring is now behind us. What a wonderful show it was! There was so much variety in the entries; there was something for everyone as they say! All comments from our 550+ visitors were favourable. We are so lucky to have so many talented and creative gals in our guild. A good number of the entries were original works. It certainly was a show we can all be proud of!
Thank you to all members who put pieces in the show- without you there would be no show, simple as that! And thanks to all of you who visited, worked a shift, contributed cookies, and spread the word about the show to all your family, friends and neighbours.
A huge thanks goes to the hanging committee for their labours; quilts were hung, then moved around until all were showcased at their best. Although there was not space to hang every piece "full out" it is hoped you felt your pieces were displayed well. It is always a challenge to find the right spot for every quilt.
Gwenda M and Barb P blew us away with their spring decorations.Gwenda came up with the idea of songbirds to go with our "Symphony of Spring" title and she outdid herself with the birds, birdhouses and thread nests. Barb took it a step further and made 20 teeny tiny quilts to hang out of the birdhouse "entrances." After all it's been a cold spring and those mama birds have to keep their babies warm! Many visitors enjoyed and commented on these extra touches.
Lastly a big thanks to all who worked on the organizing committee. What a great bunch to work with! Tired as we were by the end, we all worked so well together. (I certainly enjoyed every minute of it as I'm sure we all did!)
So - on to some photos. I still have many to edit and once that's done, I'll create a "show photo gallery" which you'll be able to access on the sidebar to the right. To hold you until then, here is a quick recap....

Right from the time you entered the building, there were beautiful quilts to see... this was a lovely grouping in the foyer.

There really was "something for everyone"... from tablerunners....
Guilded Vine by Sandi MacMillan
Berry Blues by Barbara Cross

to "wildlife"...
Tiger by Marg Wood

Swan by Gwenda Mattinson

to portraits.
The Corey Boys by Trudy Corey

From machine embroidered
Old MacDonald Had a Farm by Jane Gunn
to hand embroidered,
Love Me, Love My Cat by Sandi MacMillan

Legacy to Family by Barb Perry

and from machine pieced
Will Your Anchor Hold? by Mary Brown

to hand pieced.....
My Flower Garden by Barb Perry

There was lovely hand applique
Robert's Garden by Alice Kirkpatrick

`and wool applique.
Imperial Blooms by Ann VanWart

There were pastel quilts,
Cozy Cottage Quilt by Joan Cowan
 brightly coloured quilts,
Flight Plan by Cathy White
monochromatic quilts,
Too Many Triangles by Margaret Keddy
and quilts of intense colour.
Jean's Colours by Jean Street
There were quilts with interesting stories behind them.
A Crow Came to my Window by Susan Dobson
The New Brunswick Telephone Company by Helen Steadman

There was wearable art...
Spring Beckons by Kathy Tidswell
and wall art quilts.
Slightly Deco by LaVerne McCallum Deakin

There were quilts of all shapes and sizes, quilts of all colours and styles....  As I said, something for everyone! There were also Challenge quilts and quilts by new guild members and these will be featured in my next post. Stay tuned!

If you are wondering who won the Viewers' Choice Awards, that will be announced at our May meeting. I will post the winners here after May 19th, so stay tuned for that too!